28 September 2009

In the Parent Toolbox: House rules fridge sign

House Rules by The Mommy Blog

New in the Parent Toolbox today: Mindy Roberts of The Mommy Blog shares the cuter-then-I-could-come-up-with sign she created to make sure the rules of the house are known to all who live there.

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I especially like rule number 6!

That's way too many rules. My favorite is "always apologize." No shit. With that many rules,
these kids are going to apologize a lot. I think I broke eight or so
of them myself just getting the boys ready for preschool this morning!

@aaron: agreed. great place to start, an awful lot to remember.

Here's the complete, unabridged list of rules in my house.

"Treat each other with love and respect."

And it applies to everyone, from the top down.

Aaron, your rule is great, but some of us are imperfect enough to need examples and explanations of *ways* to treat each other with love and respect. Lists are useful for all ages in many households, if you don't need them fine but don't knock them for others.

Ironic how Aaron's list of rules don't seem to apply *outside* the home...

Remember, they are in the fridge 45868731 times a day—if they absorb three a week, I'm happy! I find that they notice fresh things each time.

I've also got a print of "The Most Spoiled Dog in the World" by Susanna Madden over the counter, and they have been reading the twenty or so sayings on that thing for years. Trust me. They like variety.

Here are her others—they are hysterical.


Aaron: For one of my kids, "treat people with love and respect"is too abstract. He needs more concrete "this is what treating someone with respect looks like" guidance. But your point is a good one: do what works for your family.

"Rules" generally are enforced and have consequences when broken. It would be very tiresome to police a list of that many rules. Also using the term "House Rules" sounds as if the list should apply to the parents as well. However, do the parents have to do as they are told, never argue, or wash their faces before eating? Experts in Early Childhood Development recommend no more than five rules. They should be general (be respectful) and stated in the positive (treat objects with care). Also, it will be a lot easier for children to follow and remember rules if they can follow the example of the parents. Develop rules that the whole family can follow. As far as giving kids concrete examples of what is expected, simply change the name of your family's list to something like "Our Routines." When a routine is forgotten, there is no need for a
consequence. Calling a long list like this "rules" teaches children that rules are often broken and aren't very important. "Be safe" is an example of a general rule that would be very important.

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